If you've found yourself leaving your phone in the fridge or pouring olive oil in your morning coffee, one mom wants you to know that you're not alone. Melanie Darnell has united sleep-deprived parents around the world in a time-lapse video so relatable you can't help but think it's a recording of you.
After 10 months of waking up exhausted, the mom of three and popular blogger behind Fit Momma was curious to see what was happening exactly when the lights went off. So, Darnell decided to record herself trying to sleep for an entire night and duct-taped a Nest cam to the ceiling. What she saw the next morning shocked her.
Though the mom had gone to bed alone at 10 p.m., it didn't take long for her children to start calling for her. Through the night, she nursed her baby and cuddled her crying toddler. She was jabbed by baby legs, had her hair pulled on, and tossed and turned so many times we lost count.
"Parenting doesn’t end when the sun goes down," Darnell wrote on Instagram last week, where the video has since gotten almost 1.5 million views. "The 4 a.m. wake-up call is especially excruciating. Still, we haul ourselves out of bed, and with bleary eyes pull our babies in close."
Moms care for their children around the clock. It's a constant struggle to get sufficient rest yet meet the needs of your child.
It can be a rough period, but Darnell hopes that moms can take comfort in knowing that there are other mothers out there who share the same experience, whether in a different city or even in a different time.
"During these moments, let's think of all of the other parents that are up with their babies at the very same middle-of-the night moment and take comfort in the thought of each of us cradling our babies in the dark of our homes, together in shared experience. Rather than feeling isolated and exhausted, we can feel connected to the other tired mothers that are also awake," she wrote.
And the thing is, those seemingly long nights are short-lived. One day, you'll find it's the last time you breastfeed your child or hold him before he sleeps.
"For now, cuddle your babies, nurse them and love them no matter what time the clock says," Darnell wrote. "The baby you rock tonight someday may have the opportunity to be gazing at the stars while holding a sweet baby of her own. She will be thinking of, and appreciating, you."